dal "PURGATORIO - VIII." from "PURGATORY - VIII "
Dante Alighieritr. Henry Cary
Era già l'ora che volge il disio
ai navicanti e 'ntenerisce il core
lo dì c'han detto ai dolci amici addio;

e che lo novo peregrin d'amore
punge, se ode squilla di lontano
che paia il giorno pianger che si more;

quand'io incominciai a render vano
l'udire e a mirare una de l'alme
surta, che l'ascoltar chiedea con mano.

Ella giunse e levò ambo le palme,
ficcando li occhi verso l'oriente,
come dicesse a Dio: "D'altro non calme".


Now was the hour that wakens fond desire
In men at sea, and melts their thoughtful heart,
Who in the morn have bid sweet friends farewell,
And pilgrim newly on his road with love
Thrills, if he hear the vesper bell from far,
That seems to mourn for the expiring day:
When I, no longer taking heed to hear,
Began, with wonder, from those spirits to mark
One risen from its seat, which with its hand
Audience implor'd. Both palms it join'd and rais'd,
Fixing its stedfast gaze toward the east,
As telling God, "I care for nought beside."
"Te lucis ante" sì devotamente
le uscio di bocca e con sì dolci note,
che fece me a me uscir di mente;

e l'altre poi dolcemente e devote
seguitar lei per tutto l'inno intero,
avendo li occhi a le superne rote.

Aguzza qui, lettor, ben li occhi al vero,
che' 'l velo è ora ben tanto sottile,
certo che 'l trapassar dentro è leggero.

Io vidi quello essercito gentile
tacito poscia riguardare in sue
quasi aspettando, palido e umile;

e vidi uscir de l'alto e scender giue
due angeli con due spade affocate,
tronche e private de le punte sue.
"Te Lucis Ante", so devoutly then
Came from its lip, and in so soft a strain,
That all my sense in ravishment was lost.
And the rest after, softly and devout,
Follow'd through all the hymn, with upward gaze
Directed to the bright supernal wheels.
Here, Reader! for the truth make thine eyes keen:
For of so subtle texture is this veil,
That thou with ease mayst pass it through unmark'd.
I saw that gentle band silently next
Look up, as if in expectation held,
Pale and in lowly guise; and from on high
I saw forth issuing descend beneath
Two angels with two flame-illumin'd swords,
Broken and mutilated of their points.
Verdi come fogliette pur mo nate
erano in veste, che da verdi penne
percosse traean dietro e ventilate.

L'un poco sovra noi a star si venne,
e l'altro scese in l'opposita sponda,
sì che la gente in mezzo si contenne.

Ben discernea in lor la testa bionda;
ma ne la faccia l'occhio si smarria,
come virtù ch'a troppo si confonda.
Green as the tender leaves but newly born,
Their vesture was, the which by wings as green
Beaten, they drew behind them, fann'd in air.
A little over us one took his stand,
The other lighted on th' opposing bill,
So that the troop were in the midst contain'd.
Well I descried the whiteness on their heads;
But in their visages the dazzled eye
Was lost, as faculty that by too much
"Ambo vegnon del grembo di Maria",
disse Sordello, "a guardia de la valle,
per lo serpente che verrà vie via".

Ond'io, che non sapeva per qual calle,
mi volsi intorno, e stretto m'accostai,
tutto gelato, a le fidate spalle.

E Sordello anco: "Or avvalliamo omai
tra le grandi ombre, e parleremo ad esse;
grazioso fia lor vedervi assai".

Solo tre passi credo ch'i' scendesse,
e fui di sotto, e vidi un che mirava
pur me, come conoscer mi volesse.

Temp'era già che l'aere s'annerava,
ma non sì che tra li occhi suoi e ' miei
non dichiarisse ciò che pria serrava.
Is overpower'd. "From Mary's bosom both
Are come," exclaim'd Sordello, "as a guard
Over the vale, 'gainst him, who hither tends,
The serpent." Whence, not knowing by which path
He came, I turn'd me round, and closely prest,
All frozen, to my leader's trusted side.
Sordello paus'd not: "To the valley now
(For it is time) let us descend; and hold
Converse with those great shadows: haply much
Their sight may please ye." Only three steps down
Methinks I measur'd, ere I was beneath,
And noted one who look'd as with desire
To know me. Time was now that air grew dim;
Yet not so dim, that 'twixt his eyes and mine
It clear'd not up what was conceal'd before.
........................
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Publ. J.M.Dent


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